One of my beefs about ethnic cuisine is whether it’s high-end or your local balti house there is not a huge difference. Two recent experiences made me feel differently.
The first was at Trishna in Blandford Street in what estate agents call Marylebone Village.
The scrumptious Sir John R (his Rolls Royce engine can ignite my underbelly any time !!!!) recommended it to me when we were in Tokyo. Walking to my accountant, I passed it and booked a table for two, inviting my accountant. It has a lunch menu of £28.50 for 3 courses with a wide choice.
I plumped for Telicherry Squid and shrimp made with curry leaves, Indian onion, and raw mango followed by Kezihode Chicken masala made with coconut, fennel and peppercorns.
Both were an extremely flavoursome assault on the taste buds and Double Ka meetha, bread and butter pudding with pistachio nougat the perfect pud.
My only critique was the service was too intrusive but certainly a restaurant I would recommend and deserving its one Michelin star. The cuisine is south west Indian coastal. Do go.
I chose Umu for my 6 monthly lunch with a billionaire I know well.
I wanted to reprise Kyoto cuisine and it was at the Kyoto Kitcho, a three star Michelin restaurant that owner Yoshinara Ishii learned his trade before becoming chef of the Japanese Embassy to the United Nations.
It has all the benefits and drawbacks of Japanese gastronomy. Benefits? Delicious food, excellent service . Drawbacks? Dull decor, very wooden like an upmarket sauna, extremely expensive and lacking in atmosphere.
The Wagyu beef will set you back fifty quid but delectable cubes of meat in a nut and miso garnish. I had two small pots of hot saki and no change from £320.